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Personal Collection Detail View

English - Introduction to Literature

by MERLOT Adminstrative Team
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This course
Learning Outcomes:
In this class, students will learn to 1) Apply close reading skills to the study of literature; 2) Classify literature as fiction, poetry, drama, or nonfiction, 3) Describe various types of fiction, 4) Compare and contrast different types of poetry, 5) Differentiate between various types of theater, 6) Practice writing about literature, 7) Apply critical theory to the study of literature, and 8) Demonstrate the ability to write a research paper.
Pedagogy Approach:
Assessment Methodology:
Writing assignments

Authorized users only:


An Online Library of Literature

Added 09/29/2009
This website is a repository of unabridged texts of Literature, from currently (6/11/2009) 39 authors, ranging from Aesop to Hobbes to Voltaire, but containing mainly authors who originally wrote in English. All selections are in English. It is a very broad and haphazard group, with no explanation of what rubric was used to chose the texts placed here, other than that all are now in English and in the public domain. However, it is a good source of information for students.

Folger Shakespeare Library

Added 09/29/2009
The Folger Shakespeare Library site includes information about the Folger Library and its collections, performances and programs, library resources, and publications. Within this site is a section with resources for teachers and students called Teaching Shakespeare. It contains lesson plans for teaching Shakespeare, a teacher's discussion area, links to related sites, and information about workshops.

The Literature Collection

Added 09/29/2009
The Literature Collection is a multilayered grouping of works in literature and the humanities including texts translated from Nordic languages, untranslated Spanish texts, and poetry. From medieval to modern, scholarly to satirical, there is something for everyone. Sub-collections or individual resources include: Nordic Translation Series, Robert Louis Stevenson's Fables, The Wisconsin Literary Magazine, Selected Works of Edith Nash, and The Robert Southey Collection


Added 09/29/2009
This publication provides a historical overview of American literature, up to the beginning of the 21st Century, as well as short profiles of the major writers -- fiction, nonfiction, drama, and poetry. Included are works by: Ralph Ellison, Billy Collins, Robert Frost, te, Sherman Alexie, Henry David Thoreau, Tennessee Williams, Saul Bellow, James Fenimore Cooper, John Updike, Mark Twain, students, Norman Mailer, U.S. literature, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Louise Gl├╝ck, Emily Dickinson, William Faulkner, biography, Ernest Hemingway, T.S. Eliot, Allen Ginsberg, Herman Melville, Toni Morrison, Walt Whitman, American literature, Eugene O'Neill, John Cheever, Eudora Welty, literature, Annie Proulx, Amy Tan, and Henry James

American Passages Website

Added 09/29/2009
This website is created to support the American Passages project at Annenberg/CPB, created by a partnership between Oregon Public Broadcasting and W.W. Norton & Company. This American Literary Survey provides professional development and classroom materials to enhance the study of American Literature in its cultural context. It is organized into 16 Units; each exploring canonical and re-discovered texts, and presenting the material through an Instructor Guide, a 30-minute documentary video series, literary texts and an integrated Study Guide.

American Passages: A Literary Survey

Added 09/29/2009
As its home page states, this site "provides professional development and classroom materials to enhance the study of American Literature in its cultural context." Sixteen units organize American literature in a new way that smoothly integrates the works of canonical and non-canonical authors. There are sixteen 30-minute videos which may be viewed on demand or purchased in DVD or VHS form, and each unit has an Instructor's Guide which may be viewed online, downloaded as a .PDF file, or obtained in print form. The Study Guide material intended for students is also available in print form or online, and there is an extensive and easily searchable Archive section that supplies photographs, sound files, and a rich variety of other illustrative material. A slide show tool allows students or teachers to create online slide shows using the Archive materials. The sixteen videos feature major authors and critics discussing the works covered. Interesting creative response and problem-based learning assignments are included for each unit. The materials are designed to coordinate with and support the Norton Anthology of American Literature, but they can be used with other texts as well.

Literary Visions

Added 09/29/2009
This is a seriew of 24 half-hour videos (viewable online) that deal with literary analysis. Fran Dorn hosts each one, and most episodes use clips from author interviews or dramatic scenes to illustrate what is being discussed. Although the episodes can be seen as an online course, they also work as free-standing objects that can be integrated with other content. One must register in order to use the Anneneberg Video on Demand feature, but registration is free.

Literature: What Makes a Good Short Story?

Added 09/29/2009
Using Susan Glaspell's short story "A Jury of Her Peers," this site explores the elements of good literature through the sections: Constructing Plot, Exploring Point of View, Creating Character, Describing Setting, and Analyzing Theme. Related Resources are also available.

Resources for Teaching American Literature Surveys

Added 09/29/2009
This site is a support site for those teaching American Literature survey courses. It includes reviews of other sites, examples of syllabi and assignments, annotated links, etc. Materials here would be very helpful to the instructor.

Heart of Darkness Webquest - Literary Criticism

Added 09/29/2009
This is a thoughtfully crafted webquest to guide students to analyze the well-known "Heart of Darkness" from a critical perspective - and students can each choose the critical perspective they prefer (feminism, post-colonial, deconstruction, reader-response, etc). Resources are provided for each perspective, and then questions for the assignment are ready-made for you. Just assign it and grade their papers :o)

The American Novel Since 1945

Added 09/29/2009
This is an online course that traces the formal and thematic developments of the novel in this period, focusing on the relationship between writers and readers, the conditions of publishing, innovations in the novel's form, fiction's engagement with history, and the changing place of literature in American culture. The reading list includes works by Richard Wright, Flannery O'Connor, Vladimir Nabokov, Jack Kerouac, J. D. Salinger, Thomas Pynchon, John Barth, Maxine Hong Kingston, Toni Morrison, Marilynne Robinson, Cormac McCarthy, Philip Roth and Edward P. Jones. The course concludes with a contemporary novel chosen by the students in the class.'
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